NHL Rumor Mill – October 11, 2019

by | Oct 11, 2019 | Rumors | 34 comments

The latest Bruins and Stars speculation in today’s NHL rumor mill.


NBC SPORTS BOSTON: In a recent mailbag segment, Joe Haggerty was asked if the Boston Bruins should package defenseman Urho Vaakanainen for a scoring winger. With Zdeno Chara aging, he believes they’ll need Vaakanainen on the left side of their blue line. The young blueliner could be scratching the surface of his ability.

Could the Boston Bruins consider shopping Torey Krug for a scoring winger? (Photo via NHL Images)

Haggerty mused over the possibility of the Bruins evaluating Vaakanainen, Charlie McAvoy, and Matt Grzelcyk during this season in consideration of perhaps shopping Torey Krug for a scorer before the trade deadline. The blueliner is slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. Haggerty also speculates the Bruins could find a way to move on from winger Danton Heinen if another young player outperforms him.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bruins general manager Don Sweeney isn’t in any rush to make a big move for a winger. He will take his time evaluating his roster before going that route if necessary before the trade deadline. It could cost them a promising young player to address their secondary scoring but they could get a more affordable option closer to the trade deadline. 

Contract extension talks are reportedly underway with Kruf. Should the rearguard remain unsigned by the trade deadline, I think Sweeney hangs onto him for the playoffs as an “own rental”. 


NHL.COM: In a recent mailbag segment, Mike Heikawas asked if the Dallas Stars need to consider an early trade to address their early-season struggles. He feels they just need more time to see where they’re at. “Unless something disastrous happens, my guess is they wouldn’t even consider a move until after Halloween'” he said.

Asked if they could use their long-term injury reserve space to add a Brian Boyle-type player, Heika replied they might be best served by adding a bigger contract later in the season. He cited as an example their addition of Mats Zuccarello before last season’s trade deadline.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Stars are 1-3-1 in their opening five games of this season. Their sputtering start is troubling but they have plenty of time to turn things around. I don’t see them making any significant moves right now.

We know they’re trying to trade defenseman Julius Honka. On his own, however, he’ll only attract at best a middle-round draft pick. Perhaps they can package him with another player if they need to make a bigger move after Halloween. They have until Dec. 1 to sign Honka or trade him to a club that signs him. Otherwise, he’ll be ineligible to play in the NHL for the rest of this season.


  1. If the Stars are looking for a “Brian Boyle type player” they could always, ya know, sign Brian Boyle 🤷🏻‍♂️

    • Makes sense. I mean, the guy isn’t ancient or anything, turning 35 in December, and he’s been pretty darned durable for the type of game he plays.

      According to Bob McKenzie he expects to have a contract soon – could be Dallas.

      • To be honest Id like to get rid of Haley & McKegg in NY and sign Boyle for 4th line duties. He will most definitely help on the PK. Add toughness and can help the young centers on faceoffs etc..

  2. Where are all the Leaf haters ??….C,mon we need your help in fixin’ this situation…

    • Man I hate those leafs. Bagged me up 5 bags yesterday and it ain’t even really hit fall yet!

    • Na, give them time, they have a new blue line, it will take time to get it all in order. But Hutchinson looks worrisome, they might need an upgrade

    • It’s October. S*^t happens in Oct-Nov hockey. All the time. Having said that, if some among LeafsNation thought Zaitsev-Hainsey-Gardiner were problematic they are in for some eye-opening nights with Barrie and Ceci when it comes to defensive gaffes. They’ve each established that pattern over several seasons and that’s not about to change simply because they now ear a different jersey.

  3. I know its just 5 games but Pavelski has 1 assist in 5 games, I really thought he would have more at least this season.

  4. Sweeney been looking for two years to get a RW to play on Krecji line. It’s apparent the ask is more then he is willing to pay.

    However 4 games in and Heinen and Ritchie are the only two forwards with a goal outside on first liners Pastrnak (2) and Marchand (3) who account for more then 50% of Boston 9 goals after 4 games.

    The good news is they went 3-1 on the road trip, but if the top line isn’t scoring they are not winning.

    After watching Boston play live in Arizona , why opinion of Krug was more cement then before. If he can bring back a productive RW I believe Sweeney should jump all over it. For all the offense Krug helps to bring to the team his defensive play and lack of elite skating hurts the team more then helps. To many times I watched Torey give the puck away in his own zone to avoid a check. Further to that he is going to be expensive to resign and I don’t believe he’ll bring back value for his next contract. Trade him why his value is high.

    • 1. would a Krug for Hoffman work?

      Hoffman plays both sides

      BOS has depth on D to make it work

      2. offer Backes for Eriksson if VAN picks up salary. Eriksson played well with Krecji before

      • IHC no on both accounts, Hoffman is schedule to be a ufa at season end, and he turns 30 in November I would rather the Bruins go younger, term, lower cap and not yet proven. Yes I want it all.

        Boston for now is better off staying the course with Backes, as Ericksson has an extra year on his contract.

    • Would an experiment with Krug on the wing for a few games be worth trying?

      He’s got the offensive instincts and hands to play forward, and Boston has the defensive depth to replace him on the back end.

      • DM interesting, but I don’t think that is something Krug would want to do in his ufa season, but interesting.

      • To be perfectly fair what the Bruins need is for Krug to get hurt for about 6 weeks so that they see what they have in MacAvoy running the PP. For any defensive short comings Krug might have he is the anchor back there on PP, just like Carlo on PK. Then and only then would they know if they could trade or keep and try to sign him.

        Scoring wingers do not grow on trees and they really should have looked at a guy like Stone last year. I know people didn’t want to give up the assets to get him, but for a game changing scoring winger like stone that is what you have to do.

        The Bruins have way to many Dman and Vaak is the the guy I dont think should be traded.

      • I would even take a chance on a guy like Ho-Sung from the Islanders. The kid could score and needed to grow up but with the Bruins structure and team mentality he might look good beside Krejci

      • Just curious Greatgonzo about what leads you to believe Ho-Sang “could score?”

        The most he’s ever registered as a junior was 32 in 67 gp with Windsor in 2023-14 – not bad but easily dwarfed by a host of juniors who haven’t made it yet either. After that it was 19 in 46 gp with Niagra in 2015-16 and, since turning pro, 10 in 50gp with Bridgeport in the AHL. He’s had 7 goals in 53 NHL games and all of 26 in 153 AHL gp.

        Yakopov, a 1st overall, had 49 and 31 goals in 65gp and 42 gp as a junior with Sarnia, and in the NHL registered 62 goals in 350 gp. And he’s in the KHL.

        Why do some still think Ho-Sang has better stuff in him? I Just don’t see it.

      • I guess I remember watching him and he has that rough side to his game kind of like a horten, something Krejci has missed on his line.

      • And dont get me wrong, I have never been a Krejci fan, but he is able to slow the play down to make guys like Lucic successful, so I see him as a guy I would like to be given a chance there.

        They have 2 skill guys in Heinen and Coyle which is where I thought they should have given Bjork a shot too.

        Just one mans opinion… haha

      • I’ve pushed this idea before here and other sites. Dress 7 defenseman give Krug some shifts up front and if a defenseman goes down or gets in the penalty box you have a replacement. Krug has the speed and can fight in the corners. Worth a try.
        Also Debrusk and Kuhlman both scored against Colorado but both goals taken away. So they are producing and creating chances.

    • There were reports that Yzerman was interested in Krug over the summer, and will target him next summer if he reaches free agency.

      Mantha would of course be the perfect player for Boston…imagine adding his size and scoring touch on that right wing. He’s exactly the type of player Krejci has excelled playing with. I don’t think Detroit has any intention of trading him though.

      Would some swap of Krug for Bertuzzi make sense?

      More than likely Detroit would rather just wait until July and sign him if he’s available. Its not as if they are competing for a cup this year.

      • They could trade Krug and add to that to get Mantha and I would be all over that. But your right, not many teams with a guy like Mantha would be willing to trade them.

      • That’s for sure. And lest we forget, Mantha had to put in 132 games in the AHL to get all the kinks out of his game. No overnight success here – he had to work to get it. And he did. Good lesson for all those young Sens whose noses may be out of joint at being sent to Belleville – Logan Brown, Batherson, Formenton etc., and a host of others around the league in similar situations. Puljujarvi should take note.

  5. Not sure who Dallas would try to peddle. Benn, Seguin & Joey Pavs aren’t going anywhere upfront. So who could and would move upfront to help?

    • swap pavelski and zuc

    • Mattias Janmark maybe? To someone needing a 4th line C? Just 26 at $2.3 mil and a UFA next season.

  6. Dear Kyle,

    The Leafs simply have a badly structured roster. Thanks partly to you. It is badly formed as they lack with the possible exception of Muzzin a dominate defensive defense man. You pays too much attention to advanced statistics and not enough to the power of inertia. What already is tends to continue and repeat itself. Question Kyle how many Stanley cups are won without at least one big solid dominant defensive D man.

    You have given out bad contracts . The worst is Marner’s. Your salary budget distributed their money across the roster intelligently. It is bad enough to have 4 players pulling down 40 million, it is catastrophic ( and Kyle I would add as a bright young man….stupid as well). To distribute the money across one group — forwards.

    Advanced statistics have a role, young Kyle, but so does history. Use some that intelligence and power you have to learn what you don’t know.

    And here is one from an old guy. Everyone in this life makes mistakes, the one’s that learn from them and cut their losses early come out okay in the long run. Trade Marner sooner rather than later. He is going nowhere in May. The longer his contract stays in the room the more harm it will do to players that feel he is comparatively overpaid to them.

    Question Kyle, if Marner at almost 11 milion and Tavares at just over 11 million can’t do well without Hyman. What is Hyman worth?

    You have already gone down the rabbit hole…the question is can you get out?

    I hope so, I have been a Leaf fan a long time and would like to see something better than what is on offer now, before I cross the Rubicon. After all, my Saturday nights are more pleasurable when the Leafs win than when they lose.

    Sincerely Yours

    Old Blue Dog

    • I hear your pain old blue dog. But if Marner is as grossly overpaid as you see it, what GM in his right mind is going to add that to his cap structure?

      • When I first read this, I thought it began with “Dear Lyle.” I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why Lyle was partially responsible for the Leafs imbalanced roster.

      • The answer George is that the Leafs may have to eat as much money on this contract ( possibly as they are on the Kessel contract), to get it where they can trade value for value.

        I think I wrote during the RFA period that the Leafs should have signed Brandon Carlo to an offer sheet that left about 4 million on the Cap available to Mitch and Paul Marner. Thereafter not communicate with the Marners nor their agent.. Let them figure out what is left over and that this player is not a priority to anyone but Kypreous, Leaf dislikers and the players union. But alas, that is not what came to pass.

        This is just one fan’s opinion and a fan who has been wrong many a time and oft….but that is what makes a market….including the NHL free agent market.

        Kyle is a bright young man who is in over his head. He got schooled this Spring and Summer. The question does he know he got schooled and did he learn anything from it.

      • old blue dog – if Dubas ever takes that route he might just as well kiss his job goodbye. Can you imagine the flak over holding back millions per of a guy you just signed to a long-term $10 mil plus deal??? The Toronto media would be frothing at the mouth.

        Give him some time – the big contract just signed by Chabot isn’t exactly helping his early game either. Maybe there’s a lesson to be learned between having a rod shoved up one’s ass to get motivated (see Laine) and counting all those greenbacks in your mind. Getting key pieces like Hyman and Dermott, even if the latter has yet to establish himself as a Top 4 D-man, will help stabilize things

  7. Leafs are fine. That is the best defence they have assembled since the Salming and Turnbull era.
    I would be very worried about injuries though no money for depth

    Krug has already said he would provide a discount
    When he went down in the playoffs a couple of years back the Bruins were done. All he needs are O zone starts and PP . There will be lots of options to add a forward in the coming weeks. Wait until at least American thanks giving . Coyle wasn’t a bad addition. As example

    Patience grasshopper.

    • Not according to my grandson who’s a diehard Leafs fans and was at that fiasco last night. To quote him “Rielly was brutal – see the Shattenkirk goal” and “Andersen was weak on a few.” And Ceci part of their best defence assembled since Salming and Turnbull? In what way?

      But I agree. Too friggen early to get excited by nightly ups and downs. A lot of fans leaving the Ottawa rink last night were heard muttering that, with even mediocre goaltending they’d have beaten the Blues.

  8. The Bruins will be fine.
    They’ve only played 4 games so far.

    Short turnaround after taking the Blues to 7 games in the final just a few months ago.

    Bjork will be on Krech’s right side before long.

    7 more, 1 year deals for Chara solidifies the back end for years to come.
    He’s gonna train all of those kids.

    I like Krug a lot. I don’t like him at or near 7 million though.
    If he was that good, wouldn’t he be 1D instead of Chara?

  9. Krug wants to be a Bruin and that’s nice. Can Boston afford him, yes but at what price and term. Boston has $3m coming off the books with Seidenberg and Belesky buy out and retained money. With Coyle ufa and Debrusk being the main two to resign should be do able with the cap also going up a couple of mill.
    I didn’t think Boston was a cup contender last season ( I was wrong) this season I think they are but I also think they could miss the playoffs.
    I not a fan of seeing players walk for nothing unless the offers are just to low.
    A sign and trade of Krug to Detroit would be nice if it’s for an unprotected 1st round pick and a elc player or prospect. The early the trade like this the better, while it’s early in the season and the Wings believe they have a chance at the playoffs; the later in the season and potentially the further the red wings are out of the playoffs the less likely they would give up the 1st round pick.